1. Wednesday, July 21, 2004

    tsar 

    spaceland

    july 20, 2004

    i was picked up by two skinny girls in a convertable. one had long dark hair, the other platinum blonde with streaks of pink and grey.

    the latter had authored the very popular lesbian sex secrets for men back in 2000.

    the former had already broken into the absinthe before i could kiss her cheek and tell her how i’d missed her so.

    i was playing the role of the luckiest man in america.

    we drank we smoked we told each other how hot we all looked and i took a cold shower and shaved the stubble from my bald head as the ladies watched heavy metal parking lot, judas priest fans being interviewed in 1983 from landover maryland. both of my guests were huge fans of the band and the genre.

    i came out of the shower and ms. goddard got any stray hairs from my head.

    she and i were on the radio together back in the glory days of grunge.

    music to us was everything.

    what a joy it was for us to be in college from ’87-’91, be on the radio, write reviews in the paper, see the shows, and interview the musicians.

    and i think she would agree that in the midst of nirvana + pixies + janes addiction + beastie boys + sonic youth + replacements, a stroll down the street of isla vista would yeild bands that were just as talented, creative, enjoyable and worthwhile.

    bands like rogue cheddar, mons pubis, the sean white band, and the wonderfuls could have definately held their own against anything that was on the radio.

    which is why its no suprise that tsar, a mix of mons pubis and the wonderfuls is so good.

    tsar played last night.

    it was the first time they did so with their new drummer chuck.

    people asked me today how tsar was able to replace steve coulter, who quit la’s best unsigned rock group a few weeks ago.

    let it be known that even before i heard my favorite band, tsar, on kxlu on monday night and watched them last night, i knew that you couldnt replace coulter

    and everyone knows you cant replace coulter.

    my other favorite band, ac/dc has yet to replace bon scott.

    with that said, chuck played the drums better than i expected.

    will he someday be the rock star that coulter is?

    doubtful.

    but i do know that chuck blazed through the blistering and complicated set last night like a fucking rock star, and thats all i really need from the affable lad.

    john paul jones was in the greatest rock band ever and in thirty years he has never been mistaken for a rock star.

    tsar, collectively, is rock incarnate.

    three guys who have known each other forever, and a smiling next door neighbor drummer named chuck

    they have an arsenal of catchy pop songs disguised as punk with guitar solos.

    and still it was sad and weird not to see steve coulter up there

    and it took many many many free jamesons for me not to notice his absence.

    however, as aj and jeanine told me over thai in silverlake,

    they could have done much much worse.

    and then we clinked our beer bottles

    and spilled a little on the ground for the brotha who wasnt there.

    the coulter classic + steve’s birthday in 2002 + steve and heather’s wedding